Shame! Shame! Shame!

My housemates and I were having one of our regular late night chats – we all open our bedroom doors, stand or sit there and talk for a few hours and then get on with our lives – when we started talking about politics. I’m using this term loosely here: what we were actually talking about was politicians’ interviews.

Obviously, that one Theresa May question came up. She was asked – a while back now – “what is the naughtiest thing you’ve ever done?”. Frankly, I think that’s a pretty idiotic and inappropriate question to ask anyone. Let me tell you no one in the house shared their answer to the question – oh what a surprise.

When I was thinking about all the “naughty” crap I’ve done, I was filled with shame – I also realised I can get really mean sometimes. Another realisation from this was that, that feeling of shame comes to me way too often.

I tend to deal with that shame the Clinton way – Bill not Hilary -: hard denial. You know the “I did not have sexual relations with this woman” type line – especially if I did. Accompanied with a how-dare-you-suggest-I-did-that face, it’s the only coping mechanism to shame I’ve known so far.

But I’m tired of being ashamed, so this is going to change. From today onward, I will admit that yes, I did do it, and I probably liked it. Too much shame has already been suffered; so today, I’m sharing with you 5 of the songs that make me lower the volume on my iPod – you know, just to make sure people will never find out I like those songs. I will not be ashamed for doing things I enjoy – well, at least I will try.

5 – Since U Been Gone – Kelly Clarkson (Breakaway, 2004)

This song is an example of what pop perfection is. This is not really a surprise, the songwriting team behind it is responsible for many of the pop successes from the noughties (and they’re still around) – we’ve got the Swede Max Martin and the infamous Lukasz Gottwald (aka Dr. Luke). It’s simple enough to really stick in your mind but it has that great bass line and crazy vocals – Kelly is musically screaming at some point.

4 – Don’t Cha – Pussycat Dolls, with Busta Rhymes (PCD, 2005)

I know you like it, I know you do! When this song comes on, I just want to power-walk down the streets with a bunch of pretty ladies. I admire the confidence in the lyrics. In the video for this song, Nicole Scherzinger is wearing a – very mid-noughties – cropped hoody where “don’t you wish your girlfriend was hot like me” – the best line of the song – is written. I want that hoody, it’s in poor taste, but I know I can make it work.


In this spirit of honesty and getting rid of the shame, I have to tell you that K-Pop did not hook me with the music, but with colourful videos and hot boys in outfits so weird they’re back to cool again. BANG BANG BANG came to my attention because it’s one of the songs the South Korean government blasted over to North Korea – in a very passive-aggressive-hormonal-teenager-after-an-argument-with-mommy kind of fashion. Like most K-Pop songs, it seems kind of crazy for the untrained audience. It has that weird slowed down chorus and that final clubby section that somehow work together. I don’t understand how they pull it off, but they do.

2 – I Miss You – Blink-182 (Blink-182, 2003)

This one is a blast from the past – seriously, just looking at that album cover makes you feel like you’re a teen again if you were around at that time. In the chorus, which is most of the song, Tom DeLonge pronounces the words in a rather unusual fashion while Mark Hoppus replies with a distant “I miss you, I miss you”. The reply gets me every time!

1 – It Never Rains In Southern California – Albert Hammond (It Never Rains In Southern California, 1972)

Oh! The ’70s! A blessed time when a flute solo in a pop song was considered a good idea. Don’t you miss the pop flutes? I personally love a good flute. So here, along with the flute melody, Albert Hammond sings about his new home, he moved to California after living in Gibraltar – I lived around there and I can tell you it does not rain much either down there.


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